Twenty Nazi warships exposed by drought in the Danube

Twenty Nazi warships exposed by drought in the Danube

Hundreds of Nazi warship wrecks lie at the bottom of the Danube, Europe's second largest river.

Drought across Europe has caused the level of the Danube River to drop so low in recent weeks that the wrecks of some 20 Nazi warships, some still loaded with explosives, are now on display near from the port village of Prahovo, Serbia.

Hundreds of such wrecks lie at the bottom of the Danube, Europe's second largest river that the Nazis took from southern Germany, where it rises, to reach the the Black Sea, into which it empties.

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The Germans scuttled hundreds of their ships when they retreated from the advancing Russians at the end of the war. And this summer's drought, one of the worst in Europe since recorded meteorological data, has caused these military remnants to resurface.

Some of the ships still possess turrets, command bridges, broken masts and twisted hulls, while others are almost entirely submerged under sandbanks.

On some of the wrecks, we can still distinguish the mast, the deck of command and hull.

While the discovery is fascinating, it is nonetheless dangerous: some of these ships still contain metric tons of explosives and ammunition.

Germany's Black Sea Fleet has left behind a major ecological disaster that threatens us, the people of Prahovo, Velimir Trajilovic, 74, a pensioner from the port village who has written a book on the subject, told Reuters. .

According to the Serbian Ministry of Transport, there are approximately 10,000 explosive devices in the water, which not only poses an ecological threat, but also makes navigation dangerous for sailors, as well as for local fishermen. /p>

Wrecks of Nazi warships make navigation perilous near of Prahovo, Serbia, and pose a risk to local fishermen.

Serbian authorities have resorted to dredging operations to keep the shipping lanes open. Near Prahovo, the presence of shipwrecks still reduced the width of the shipping lane from 180 meters to 100 meters.

In March, the Serbian government launched a call for tenders for the removal of wreckage and the explosives they contain. The operation is valued at around 37 million Canadian dollars.

This is not the first time that such remains have resurfaced. Some of the Danube Nazi wrecks notably appeared during a heat wave in 2003.

Some of the boats, sunk in the Danube at the end of World War II, are still loaded with explosives.

With information from CNN, and Washington Post

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